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I bought 3 Tom Fords and I feel terrible about it. - Page 12

post #166 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by JubeiSpiegel View Post

Is the discussion now that half of bespoke clients end up dissatisfied, or that half of bespoke customers get a suit with less than stellar fit? confused.gif

yes sir, and I think the result is already known satisfied.gif
post #167 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackhood View Post

Have you read the rest of this thread, gegarrenton? I don't have the energy to explain yet again why he is correct. If you don't know what you're talking about then please for the love of god, keep your trap shut.


Yes, I have read the thread, and no, he is not correct in asserting over half of bespoke customers pay for the concept and not the results.

 

I think you probably need to heed your own advice. This is actually prime evidence of why there are only about 3 knowledgeable people left posting here.

post #168 of 221
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by suited

Yeah, that suit looks like shit.

I have no issue with the decision of the OP. I mean, other than the fact that he could have picked the suits up at a steep discount from the TF outlet. I may be going against the grain here, but it always puzzles me when I see people going bespoke when they have a body type that would easily allow them to buy OTR and have a skilled tailor do the rest. With OTR, there's much less risk involved. You know exactly what you're getting. This does not apply to men that have established relationships with bespoke tailors and have gone through a vetting process by having several suits cut by the same shop. Other than simply enjoying the idea and process of having a garment custom made for you (which, admittedly, is nice), I seriously question the ROI of the entire process in terms of fit and function vs. OTR. Look at the bespoke pics that are posted here, do you really need anymore evidence? I completely understand why guys with unusual body types go custom, simply because their proportions don't allow for a great fit OTR, but I bet more than half of bespoke customers end up paying for the concept more than the results.

Quote:
If he was lucky and found the ones he wanted in his size. You can't really just walk in there and expect them to have the inventory that their normal stores would

Actually I was at the outlet on Saturday ....they in fact did not have my size.

Having said that they do have TF shirts and it's great for that!! They even have made to measure ones that fit me perfectly . Apparently there are customers who made MTM and never Picked them up so the outlet gets them.

I did notice however that some of their merchandise did have defects so you have to be very careful..... All sales are final .
post #169 of 221
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by suited

Yeah, that suit looks like shit.

I have no issue with the decision of the OP. I mean, other than the fact that he could have picked the suits up at a steep discount from the TF outlet. I may be going against the grain here, but it always puzzles me when I see people going bespoke when they have a body type that would easily allow them to buy OTR and have a skilled tailor do the rest. With OTR, there's much less risk involved. You know exactly what you're getting. This does not apply to men that have established relationships with bespoke tailors and have gone through a vetting process by having several suits cut by the same shop. Other than simply enjoying the idea and process of having a garment custom made for you (which, admittedly, is nice), I seriously question the ROI of the entire process in terms of fit and function vs. OTR. Look at the bespoke pics that are posted here, do you really need anymore evidence? I completely understand why guys with unusual body types go custom, simply because their proportions don't allow for a great fit OTR, but I bet more than half of bespoke customers end up paying for the concept more than the results.

Quote:
If he was lucky and found the ones he wanted in his size. You can't really just walk in there and expect them to have the inventory that their normal stores would

Actually I was at the outlet on Saturday ....they in fact did not have my size.

Having said that they do have TF shirts and it's great for that!! They even have made to measure ones that fit me perfectly . Apparently there are customers who made MTM and never Picked them up so the outlet gets them.

I did notice however that some of their merchandise did have defects so you have to be very careful..... All sales are final .
post #170 of 221
OK I finally finished writing up some thoughts, inspired in part by this thread. It's from my blog, so that's why there's an attempted introduction and conclusion as opposed to sounding like a forum post:

Inevitably in any online discussion of ready-to-wear clothing, someone will recommend as refuge from any ailment clothing can inflict: “Go Bespoke.” The solution to all your problems, real or imagined. Go Bespoke, young man. Travel to this fabled land where dropped shoulders are raised, where bird chests are swelled to heroic proportions, and beer bellies made to appear six-packs of San Pellegrino. How? It’s bespoke, anything is possible! If, that is, you are worthy. Pure of heart, wise in fabrics, and sagacious of fit.
This is not how bespoke works. That’s not to say that bespoke tailoring isn’t worth the time and expense that it requires. For many, there is no substitute for it. But it is not a magic elixir. Nor does deciding to spend an equivalent amount of money on ready-to-wear clothing represent some personal failing of either judgment or morals.
I hope to give an idea of what bespoke clothing can and can’t offer. This will vary from tailor to tailor. My comments are meant to be as general as possible, drawing from my experience with four different custom tailors (plus five shirtmakers and a couple of custom tie-makers, but this article is mostly meant to refer to jackets and trousers).
The closest analogy I can think of is the difference between a dinner in a restaurant and one made for you by a personal chef, except that in each case you have to commit to eating that dish once a week for years.
Ready-to-wear clothing is like food in a restaurant. You are presented with a menu of options. You may be able to change each dish slightly at the margins, but essentially everything that’s available is on the menu. Before committing to eating a dish for years to come, you can try a sample off the production line and see what you think. Of course, there are all sorts of restaurants. Some are very good and very expensive, some are terrible and expensive, some are just terrible. Finding very good and reasonably cheap is rare but not impossible.
Bespoke clothing is like hiring a personal chef. Although your dinner is made just for you, a chef tends to specialize in a certain type of cuisine. He may be talented and versatile. But even though he knows how to use a knife and stove and can look up a recipe on the Internet, it doesn’t make much sense to ask Mario Batali for Kung Pao Chicken. The fact that it’s custom-made for you doesn’t mean that you can or should ask whatever you want of a particular chef.
Since your chef is cooking just for you that night as opposed to working in a big kitchen designed to pump out hundreds of dishes a night, it’s likely (although not certain) that he will take more care with each production step, and put more thought into each design choice. You can give him general direction on what you want (what sort of dish, what kinds of flavors you like most, what will be required for a particular occasion) the vast majority of these design and production choices (what kind of pots to use, where to source the meat, how much salt in the marinade) will be made by the cook without your input, and likely without you ever even knowing that there was a choice to be made.
Nor is the personal chef guaranteed to be “better” than a restaurant. You can hire the guy flipping burgers at your local fast food joint to be your personal chef. You’ll probably get a better meal by going to a three-star Michelin restaurant. Even hiring a highly acclaimed personal chef is no guarantee of satisfaction. You may not communicate with him well. He may execute his dishes well but in a style that you don’t like. He may have a fondness for using some ingredient to which you are allergic.
Nor are you necessarily going to get a better meal by asking your personal chef to make you cobia just like they make at Le Bernardin, except just for you. Even if your chef is as talented as Eric Ripert, there are many variables that go into making the cobia at Le Bernardin. If what you want is the cobia at Le Bernardin, make a reservation there and order the cobia.
Finally, there’s no particular expertise necessary to just turn your nightly menu over to a talented chef. If you aren’t too picky and like his general style, and just want high quality food that will nourish you and be acceptable to the vast majority of guests that come to your house for dinner, choose a generally acclaimed chef (this is going to be expensive) and put yourself in his hands.
All the same concepts apply to the differences between ready-made and bespoke clothing. When you buy clothing in the store, you have a pretty decent idea of what it is going to look like on you, even after alterations. And there is high-quality RTW that looks great.
If you’re satisfied with the way off-the-peg garments look on you, there’s no need to “go bespoke” in the hopes that it’ll be the same, just better. It will almost certainly not be the same, and whether or not it’s better will likely be open to interpretation. Bespoke represents a risk, since you don’t know what the finished product will look like. You have some idea based on what you see on other clients, and you have some control over the development of the product during the fittings, but uncertainty remains.
On the other hand, when a bespoke piece really gets it right, which quality tailors are able to do fairly reliably, fellow travelers and, more importantly, its owner, will recognize it as a beautiful and unique thing that nothing from a store could ever match. The wearer also has a personal connection to the garment’s origin and development, a comfort as dignified as it is archaic. To those who recognize the value in these things, there is no substitute. They will continue to chase the woolen dragon until either their lifetime or their bank account has been exhausted.
If you have seen such a garment, and have this sensibility, then you’ll know what I mean already. We may not agree on which are the truly inspirational masterpieces. But we will share the experience.
If you haven’t had this experience, you can, of course, still commission quality bespoke clothing, if you have the money and patience for it. There are no secret code words you have to whisper to the tailor to earn his attention. It will be helpful if you can express some ways that you’re dissatisfied with the ready-to-wear garments you already own, but it is not necessary. Just answer his questions honestly and let him do his thing. As I indicated above with the chef analogies, once you have chosen your tailor, most of the stylistic decisions have already been made. You have to trust him. If you no longer trust him, it’s time to find a new tailor.
If all this sounds really scary and bothersome to you, then you’ll probably be a happier person if you just stick to ready-made clothes. It doesn’t make you any worse of a person, just as owning bespoke suits does not make you a better person.
Whatever is on your plate, buon appetito.
post #171 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by gegarrenton View Post


Yes, I have read the thread, and no, he is not correct in asserting over half of bespoke customers pay for the concept and not the results.

I think you probably need to heed your own advice. This is actually prime evidence of why there are only about 3 knowledgeable people left posting here.

It was more than obvious that "over half" was an exaggeration but the fact remains that in my years as a tailor I have seen many more people walk away with less than they expected than is generally admitted to here.

If something OTR gets you 99% of the way there, then the chance of your tailor doing better is slim, with the notable exception of maybe 4 or 5 houses on the Row, and scattered through mainland Europe. Advising a person new to tailoring to undertake the kind of research and thought-processes necessary for bespoke when that person has the means to buy something almost perfect OTR is not just wrong, its down right evil. It is very likely to result in him getting a poor bespoke service, and feel negatively about an industry that desperately needs some resurgence.

This near-mythologising of bespoke is damaging to both tailor and customer. The customer ends up paying through the nose with unrealistic expectations and the tailor is left trying to turn a short fat man into Fred Astaire.

^ unbelragazzo Beat me to it with much more flair and talent for writing.
post #172 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackhood View Post


This near-mythologising of bespoke is damaging to both tailor and customer.

I wonder how many of the posters whose immediate response is always "you should have gone bespoke" have actually ever, themselves, "gone bespoke".
post #173 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by unbelragazzo View Post

Wisdom

Plus a million.
post #174 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackhood View Post

This near-mythologising of bespoke is damaging to both tailor and customer. The customer ends up paying through the nose with unrealistic expectations and the tailor is left trying to turn a short fat man into Fred Astaire.

This! Bespoke is not perfection, even if it can be (for whatever one's definition is), and it is definitely not perfection on the first try.
post #175 of 221
Thread Starter 
Unbergalazzo & Blackhood.....I'm speechless.....

That was poetry . Thank you soooooo much.

I must say however I am enjoying this new hobby. I. Just this thread I've learned so much!!!

For example I would have Picked out the most expensive cloth but then I'm told that's not necessarily the best thing for a suit.

One thing I do know is that I trust you guys ......if you guys are in NY I'll go to both of you!! I'm serious....very serious .

If it's not feasible then can you direct me who to use? I'll do whatever you say
post #176 of 221
To be clear: I am not a tailor or seller of clothing - just a customer. I really should have put "my experience as a client with four different tailors..."

There are many pictures on this site of work from different tailors, and there are many good tailors whose work isn't well represented on the site. You're in NY, which is lucky, as many are either located there or visit there. Look around a bit and see what you like.
post #177 of 221
I can't speak for any tailors in the US as I'm English and have recently moved away from bespoke work.

My advice to you is this: look at suits that you like. On TV, in magazines, in shops. Take pictures, take notes, what ever you need to but pay attention to the details rather than the finished article. Do you like the shape of that pocket flap? Did light brown buttons on a dark blue cloth look classic or boring to you? Do you like your shoulders to look herculean, or do you like to down-play your breadth?

Once you've got a feel for the bits you like and the bits you don't you can start working out which tailor might cut in a way that you find attractive. Check out a few of the Savile Row chaps - they almost all have regular trips to NYC. Google for some reputable tailors in your area; you can often weed-out the bad ones by checking here to see some reviews, and doing things as simple as asking to meet the cutter, rather than the salesman. Ask if their stuff is made on-site. Hell, I'd like to see if you could get Tom Ford to do bespoke, simply as I don't know any Mortal who has managed it. Normally thats reserved for celebrities and those in seats of power.

If that fails then come back to us with a "specification" and we can point you to someone who will be able to do well.

The thing to remember is this; the garment may take 3 months just to get to the first fitting if your tailor travels to NYC from elsewhere. A finished garment may be a year away.

The thrill of bespoke is knowing that your garment will last you 20 years. That no one else has the same item, that your chunky thighs or wobbly elbows are taken care of properly. Buying is a solution, commissioning is an experience.
post #178 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by jefferyd View Post

Plus a million.

Sorry to derail the thread. Jeff, on your blog you show a thick shoulder pad; which brand is that? RLBL, TF?
post #179 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by othertravel View Post

Sorry to derail the thread. Jeff, on your blog you show a thick shoulder pad; which brand is that? RLBL, TF?

RLPL.

Here is a comparison.

Ralph Lauren Purple Label



Tom Ford




In the TF pic, what I am pinching is the sleeve wadding, not the pad. The pad is above it, and is about 1/5 the size of the RL pad.
post #180 of 221
Quote:
Originally Posted by unbelragazzo View Post

OK I finally finished writing up some thoughts, inspired in part by this thread. It's from my blog, so that's why there's an attempted introduction and conclusion as opposed to sounding like a forum post:
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Inevitably in any online discussion of ready-to-wear clothing, someone will recommend as refuge from any ailment clothing can inflict: “Go Bespoke.” The solution to all your problems, real or imagined. Go Bespoke, young man. Travel to this fabled land where dropped shoulders are raised, where bird chests are swelled to heroic proportions, and beer bellies made to appear six-packs of San Pellegrino. How? It’s bespoke, anything is possible! If, that is, you are worthy. Pure of heart, wise in fabrics, and sagacious of fit.
This is not how bespoke works. That’s not to say that bespoke tailoring isn’t worth the time and expense that it requires. For many, there is no substitute for it. But it is not a magic elixir. Nor does deciding to spend an equivalent amount of money on ready-to-wear clothing represent some personal failing of either judgment or morals.
I hope to give an idea of what bespoke clothing can and can’t offer. This will vary from tailor to tailor. My comments are meant to be as general as possible, drawing from my experience with four different custom tailors (plus five shirtmakers and a couple of custom tie-makers, but this article is mostly meant to refer to jackets and trousers).
The closest analogy I can think of is the difference between a dinner in a restaurant and one made for you by a personal chef, except that in each case you have to commit to eating that dish once a week for years.
Ready-to-wear clothing is like food in a restaurant. You are presented with a menu of options. You may be able to change each dish slightly at the margins, but essentially everything that’s available is on the menu. Before committing to eating a dish for years to come, you can try a sample off the production line and see what you think. Of course, there are all sorts of restaurants. Some are very good and very expensive, some are terrible and expensive, some are just terrible. Finding very good and reasonably cheap is rare but not impossible.
Bespoke clothing is like hiring a personal chef. Although your dinner is made just for you, a chef tends to specialize in a certain type of cuisine. He may be talented and versatile. But even though he knows how to use a knife and stove and can look up a recipe on the Internet, it doesn’t make much sense to ask Mario Batali for Kung Pao Chicken. The fact that it’s custom-made for you doesn’t mean that you can or should ask whatever you want of a particular chef.
Since your chef is cooking just for you that night as opposed to working in a big kitchen designed to pump out hundreds of dishes a night, it’s likely (although not certain) that he will take more care with each production step, and put more thought into each design choice. You can give him general direction on what you want (what sort of dish, what kinds of flavors you like most, what will be required for a particular occasion) the vast majority of these design and production choices (what kind of pots to use, where to source the meat, how much salt in the marinade) will be made by the cook without your input, and likely without you ever even knowing that there was a choice to be made.
Nor is the personal chef guaranteed to be “better” than a restaurant. You can hire the guy flipping burgers at your local fast food joint to be your personal chef. You’ll probably get a better meal by going to a three-star Michelin restaurant. Even hiring a highly acclaimed personal chef is no guarantee of satisfaction. You may not communicate with him well. He may execute his dishes well but in a style that you don’t like. He may have a fondness for using some ingredient to which you are allergic.
Nor are you necessarily going to get a better meal by asking your personal chef to make you cobia just like they make at Le Bernardin, except just for you. Even if your chef is as talented as Eric Ripert, there are many variables that go into making the cobia at Le Bernardin. If what you want is the cobia at Le Bernardin, make a reservation there and order the cobia.
Finally, there’s no particular expertise necessary to just turn your nightly menu over to a talented chef. If you aren’t too picky and like his general style, and just want high quality food that will nourish you and be acceptable to the vast majority of guests that come to your house for dinner, choose a generally acclaimed chef (this is going to be expensive) and put yourself in his hands.
All the same concepts apply to the differences between ready-made and bespoke clothing. When you buy clothing in the store, you have a pretty decent idea of what it is going to look like on you, even after alterations. And there is high-quality RTW that looks great.
If you’re satisfied with the way off-the-peg garments look on you, there’s no need to “go bespoke” in the hopes that it’ll be the same, just better. It will almost certainly not be the same, and whether or not it’s better will likely be open to interpretation. Bespoke represents a risk, since you don’t know what the finished product will look like. You have some idea based on what you see on other clients, and you have some control over the development of the product during the fittings, but uncertainty remains.
On the other hand, when a bespoke piece really gets it right, which quality tailors are able to do fairly reliably, fellow travelers and, more importantly, its owner, will recognize it as a beautiful and unique thing that nothing from a store could ever match. The wearer also has a personal connection to the garment’s origin and development, a comfort as dignified as it is archaic. To those who recognize the value in these things, there is no substitute. They will continue to chase the woolen dragon until either their lifetime or their bank account has been exhausted.
If you have seen such a garment, and have this sensibility, then you’ll know what I mean already. We may not agree on which are the truly inspirational masterpieces. But we will share the experience.
If you haven’t had this experience, you can, of course, still commission quality bespoke clothing, if you have the money and patience for it. There are no secret code words you have to whisper to the tailor to earn his attention. It will be helpful if you can express some ways that you’re dissatisfied with the ready-to-wear garments you already own, but it is not necessary. Just answer his questions honestly and let him do his thing. As I indicated above with the chef analogies, once you have chosen your tailor, most of the stylistic decisions have already been made. You have to trust him. If you no longer trust him, it’s time to find a new tailor.
If all this sounds really scary and bothersome to you, then you’ll probably be a happier person if you just stick to ready-made clothes. It doesn’t make you any worse of a person, just as owning bespoke suits does not make you a better person.
Whatever is on your plate, buon appetito.

Great writeup. Completely agree.
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